Belinda Thomson

This authoritative account of the life and work of Paul Gauguin, one of the most original artists of the late nineteenth century, is revised and updated with color illustrations throughout.

Artist Paul Gauguin achieved a high public profile during his lifetime and was one of the first artists of his generation to achieve international recognition. But his prominence has always been tangled up with the dramatic and problematic events of his life—his self-imposed exile on a remote South Sea island and his turbulent relationships with his peers—as with the appeal of his art.

In this revised and updated edition, art historian Belinda Thomson gives a comprehensive and accessible account of the life and work of one of the most complicated artists of the late nineteenth century. Gauguin’s painting, sculpture, prints, and ceramics are discussed in the light of his public persona, his relations with his contemporaries, his exhibitions, and their critical reception. His private world, beliefs, and aspirations emerge through his extensive cache of journals, letters, and other writings. Fully illustrated in color, and drawing on the new, more global conversation surrounding the artist, Gauguin is the definitive volume on this controversial and often contradictory figure.


A pithy biography and an analytical evaluation written with energy and zest.

— Sunday Times


Belinda Thomson


Belinda Thomson studied at the University of East Anglia and at the Sorbonne, before taking her MA in art history at the Courtauld Institute. She has curated numerous exhibitions and published books on Gauguin, Eédouard Vuillard, postimpressionism, and impressionism.